Malik Saulebay, Managing Director for Risk and Legal Affairs of “Samruk-Energy” JSCThe project of launching a new integrated security model is implemented at a number of subsidiaries and affiliates of Samruk-Energy holding. It is in the active phase of development. Most recently, Malik Saulebay, Managing Director for Risk and Legal Affairs of “Samruk-Energy” JSC, has been granted the status of a project sponsor. He spoke about his vision of introducing the new integrated security model at subsidiaries and affiliates of the holding.
— Malik Oralovich, one would think that such a direction as observance of occupational safety is understandable and obvious. What new perspectives the project, which you supervise, can bring?
— Firstly, as a new employee of the company, I plunged into studying the concept of the project. Certainly, for me, as for a lawyer, who has a certain work experience, there were not any "discoveries" in the field of occupational safety and health (OHS). But at the same time, I managed to find new facets in this matter. The project aims to change human’s consciousness and paradigms. We plan to build the work of our team not by the after-control method, when the accident has already occurred, and we are forced to “clean up” the consequences. Today, we see that the methods which have been acted for decades are not relevant and don’t keep up with time.
— This project is directly related to people, most of whom have a considerable work experience in production. What methods of influence on the consciousness are, in your opinion, most applicable?
— The first thing I did was the meeting with people who work at subsidiary organizations (subsidiaries and affiliates). I recall that the organizational perimeter of the project includes 3 subsidiaries and affiliates: Ekibastuz SDPP-1 LLP, Shardarinsk HPP JSC, Moynak HPP JSC. We plan to hold meetings with staff regularly.
Safety warning signs at Ekibastuz GRES-1
Indeed, the project of introducing integrated security is for people. And their proper perception is the key to its success. Yes, many people do not quite understand now what anything new can be invented. I heard the questions from the industry workers and they were the type of people who would reply: “Do you think I was busy with trifles, when I have worked in industries for 40 years?” Of course not, - I explain to people. Nowadays approaches have changed. And I initially had a distrust of the project too, which is quite natural. Human psychology tends to resist changes.
I do understand the project, while the right messages give such results as the presence of positive reviews. The production unit has started respecting our views.
— Perhaps, the distorted perception of the need for observance of proper safety regulations has resulted in the formal approach? When the level of management’s efficiency factor depends on the “good looking” statistics, it is easier to keep silent and not to show incidents, at least small ones.
— We have resumed the work of the Committee under the Management Board, and we will not allow a formal attitude. The day before we held the first occupational safety meeting under my supervision, three issues were submitted to the Management Board of “Samruk-Energy” JSC. To me, there is a clear understanding of why OHS is out of the production unit’s control, because there exists a direct conflict of interests. Often, violation indicators are hidden behind the "curve" statistics. I want to say that the compliance of safety and health protection should become a way of life within the organization.
Now we have recorded an increase in occupational injuries compared to the same period in 2017. And it’s linked to the fact that we have launched a number of activities of a transparent system for registering occupational accidents. Today we record cases of slight and moderate severity. (Stumbling, slipping, etc.), which haven’t been before.
Experienced professionals are always ready to help young colleagues in TB issues
In addition, our transformation project includes a risk-based approach to the management of occupational safety issues, managers’ leadership enhancement in the issues of occupational safety and in general security culture in enterprises. The first managers’ responsibility for injuries was determined by development of appropriate efficiency factors. As a sponsor of this project, I do realize a huge degree of involvement and responsibility. When I meet in person with heads of subsidiaries and affiliates or do it online, I always say that “fish rot from the head”. Be a role model for the working team. If you will not wear a helmet - your subordinates by looking at you, will also ignore safety measures.
— This summer at TPP-2 (the branch of AlES in Almaty) there was an accident with a fatal outcome. What can you comment on this?
— When we began to analyze the depth of the problem, we revealed a banal non-compliance with safety measures. TPP
is a non-standard building, 10-12 floors high. There are no partitions, railings, delineated safe areas inside, there is a path, but it is not visualized. There is equipment on the roof too, which sometimes requires preventive examination and maintenance. The risk zone is- 100%. In case of fall, then from a height and into void. From the conversation with the employees, we heard - “we always walk like this ...” The first question I had was- if there was any safety equipment. Logically, there must be such equipment. However, in reality, it is not available. We get the answer – it is not written anywhere at our organization. What stops you from writing it? One of the reasons is unsatisfactory risk analysis and not well-organized control system.
Safety warning sign at Ekibastuz GRES-1
The board did not accept the arguments of the enterprises. The conclusion - 100% fault of an employer. Today, 2 people have been brought to trial, one of them is a grey-haired chief engineer of CHP-2 with a considerable work experience, and the second one is an immediate supervisor of the died employee.
— The consequences of the tragedies are directly related to such concepts as occurrence of risks and the legal component. How will these areas be integrated with each other?
— I, as the managing director, who is in charge of law and risk affairs, see clearly the direct connection of this project with such issues as risks and the legal component. Any discrepancy in the OHS may contain flaws or gaps in the internal regulatory documents. After the New Year, we plan to meet with working teams. Managers of Risks and Internal Control and Legal Support departments will be included in our working group. We are planning to purposefully reveal the weak points of the project and “put the links” in one chain: occupational safety- risks - legal issues. Thus, we will create complete support for the occupational safety process, protection of employees' rights and risks.
Currently, in order to improve the management system of occupational safety in Samruk-Energy JSC holding, the following work has been done:
- The responsibility for injuries rate has been imposed on CEOs by developing the appropriate KPI;
- In order to eliminate a conflict of interests, the structural unit for occupational safety and environmental protection was removed from the production unit and transferred to the unit in charge of risks and legal support;
- OHS services at subsidiaries and affiliates directly report to CEOs;
- OHS committees under the Management Board and the Board of Directors have been established;
- The responsibility of CEOs of subsidiaries and affiliates for concealing accidents is set out in the labor contracts;
- An individual responsibility of employees for violating safety regulations has been introduced, through a detachable voucher;
- The responsibility of CEOs for compliance with requirements occupational safety management system of the Company is included in the contracts with contracting organizations
- Additions have been made to the employment contracts of employees in terms of responsibility for concealing accidents (they acknowledge this in writing).
- Mandatory registration, investigation and recording of all incidents are stipulated, including potentially dangerous incidents that did not lead to accidents;
- A mechanism for rewarding employees for reporting accidents and potentially dangerous accidents is introduced.
- - Considering the experience of advanced companies, as a necessary measure to improve the transparency of reporting at the Company, it is planned to impose a moratorium on disciplinary liability for accidents that have occurred, except for fatal accidents.